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“A concrete sign of the EU’s presence in northern Kosovo"

26 March 2010

EULEX HoM Yves de Kermabon together with Italian Ambassador in Kosovo and EU Facilitator in the north of Kosovo Michael Giffoni and Kjartan Bjornsson from European Liaison Office during the press point in front of EU House in North Mitrovicë/a on 26.March 2010/EULEX/Enisa Kasemi
On a special visit to northern Kosovo, representatives of the European Union, have re-emphasised their commitment to socio-economic development and strengthening the rule of law throughout Kosovo, including the north.

The EU’s Facilitator for the North, Italian Ambassador Michael Giffoni, Kjartan Björnsson from the European Commission Liaison Office and Yves de Kermabon, the Head of EULEX, made their comments at the recently-opened EU house in north Mitrovica.

Mr Giffoni, said all 27 EU Member States were committed to both Kosovo’s and Serbia’s European perspective as part of the Western Balkans region and that included northern Kosovo.

“The EU presences in Kosovo share the same values towards defined objectives in Kosovo:  promoting stability, security and prosperity for the benefit of all people in Kosovo. One of the concrete achievements of this activity has been to facilitate the deployment of an effective presence of the EU in the north,” said Mr Giffoni.  

The Head of EULEX, Yves de Kermabon, stressed the fact that the EU, with all its various resources was working together to improve the situation in Kosovo, including the north:

“EULEX has a 24/7 police and customs presence on gates 1 and 31 that has resulted in a sharp decrease in smuggling. We have reopened the District Court in North Mitrovica and dealt with a number of cases supported by the local administrative staff. And now we are urgently working to bring back Kosovo-Serb and Kosovo-Albanian judges and prosecutors,” he said.

Mr Björnsson said the European Commission had already been working throughout Kosovo, including the north, for many years.

“We are committed to strenghten our involvement in northern Kosovo and thus contribute  to its stabilisation. We want to make the overall EU integration agenda more tangible to local stakeholders and support projects which will improve the quality of life. Just as an example: we plan to build a health center in Zubin Potok, we want to work on the water  purification for Leposavic " he said.

Factsheets: English, Albanian, Serbian

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